I recently attended a great LIFE business seminar in Moncton, NB on October 13th. Terry & Ann Franks were the guest speakers and did a fabulous job. I loved the topic they chose in the first session: ENCOURAGEMENT. I don’t know about you but for me it seems I naturally forget to encourage & praise effort when dealing with people. Instead I tend to automatically lean towards CORRECTION.
After the seminar many people felt the same way, we need to encourage more. Can you remember the last time your boss corrected you on a mistake you made at your job? Or the last time your friend corrected you on something you were doing wrong? The list goes on & on with these human “auto-correct” examples. Why is that? Some say it’s our educational system. That would make sense. I rarely remember being encouraged for something I simply did right at school. But as soon as I did something wrong five different people would make sure they would let me know.
It is said dogs learn a lot more from being encouraged over being corrected. When a dog does something right we give him a doggy treat and the dog’s behavior improves. Often times we see dog owners try to slap the dog and raise their voices to make a correction. It’s hard to believe the negative motivation (correction) doesn’t work as well as positive motivation (encouragement) for dogs. Our built in “human auto-correct” system is so much of a habit to us that we feel it’s the only way to help the dog. And let me make something clear, my point is not that correction doesn’t have value in today’s world. What I am saying is that we need to do less of it and more encouraging.
Ann Franks said that for every 1 negative comment we need 4 positives to counter balance. Or how Claude Hamilton puts it, when dealing with people it should be 90% encouragement & 10% correction. That is probably very accurate. I know personally when I receive positive encouraging words it feels sooo good. On the other side when I am corrected for doing something wrong I feel awful and discouraged. Many of my friends feel the same way. Author & friend of mine Chris Brady puts it another way. He says we need to become “good finders” with people. Which means we need to sincerely compliment people and find their strengths instead of pointing out their weaknesses. There is a great quote “Hurting people hurt people” that explains how some people point out other’s weaknesses and belittle them to cure their own self-esteem or confidence problems. I believe that to be true. Everyone wants to give their opinions on whatever & whoever it is. Realize this, opinions are free and are often on the negative side which again, kinda fits into correction. Nowadays it’s human nature to want to correct and offer our opinions on things. Instead we need to change our focus to encouragement. Here is a test for us, next time we want to give our opinion on something, let’s ask ourselves if it’s a negative or a positive one. If it’s negative, than bite your tongue and keep it to yourself. If it’s a positive one, let’r go & encourage!!!
It was great sharing & happy Halloween,